Have you defaulted on a loan or fallen behind on your credit card payments?
The creditor usually has the right to go to civil court to get a court judgment or order to collect the total amount of the debt. The creditor can sue you if you are behind, even if you are sending in payments.
If you get court papers about a loan or credit card, you may have defenses to judgment (reasons the Court may say you don't owe the money) or defenses to payments on a judgment (reasons you may not have to pay, even if the Court says you owe the money.) See our Defend Yourself in Court page to find out more.
Creditors will often settle the case for less than the total amount you owe. If they do, be sure to get them to put an agreement in writing.
A creditor or debt collector might tell you that they "won't accept" partial payments, but they will keep whatever money you send them and keep asking you to send more. We have never heard of a creditor or a debt collector saying they won't accept money and sending it back to the debtor !